Dr. Johnson’s research interests include behavior and welfare, specifically, pig health, pain and euthanization, caretaker-pig interactions, enrichment, on-farm assessments and audits and sow productive lifetime.
The Keating research group investigates the impacts of environmental stressors including toxicant exposure and heat stress on ovarian function using rodent and large animal models. Our long term goal is to improve fertility outcomes in production animals and humans.
The Kerns Lab research program is dedicated to advancing the understanding of male livestock reproductive physiology, with a particular focus on fertility. Utilizing a blend of traditional and next generation techniques, the Kerns Lab aims to unravel the complex mechanisms underlying sire infertility. This includes a multiomic approach utilizing proteomics, lipidomics, metabolomics, and image-based flow cytometry paired with artificial intelligence deep learning analysis. Our overarching goal is to make basic, molecular discoveries for future impact on sire/male reproductive success.
Dr. Koltes’ research interests involve understanding the host-microbe interaction and its impact on overall performance in broilers, layers, and turkeys. Her short-term goals are to establish baseline microbial communities and environmental parameters that alter them; and to identify microbial communities to monitor for intestinal health that improve overall nutrient utilization and mitigate antibiotic usage.
Members of the Disease and Muscle Dysfunction Lab are interested in mechanisms of muscle injury. We study this within the context of Duchenne muscular dystrophy and dysfunction caused by heat stress with two major goals: 1) improve our mechanistic understanding of these pathologies so that, 2) we can develop and deploy effective therapies and countermeasures.
Dr. Youngs’ research focuses on the use of reproductive biotechnologies (artificial insemination, embryo transfer) for genetic improvement of livestock. He has a special interest in embryo and sperm cryopreservation.